I am stealing this intro and the idea for it directly from my cousin Carol's blog post, as I am in this story-writing club, and I think posting it to our blogs (the few of us who have them) is a great idea, and hey, a week off of writing a new post for me! Check out Carol's blog here!
I wrote this because there I was at my cousin Sara's baby shower last month and Cindy, another cousin, said, "My grandmother was allergic to caffeine so she couldn't eat much chocolate. She loved chocolate. When I was little she made me promise that if I could catch her as she was dying, I should put some put some chocolate to her lips. She said ‘I just want one last bite before I die.’"
Carol cracked, "A Bite Before I Die? Great title!"
About 7 of us decided to write an essay with that title, no particular length or subject restrictions. Our stories were as diverse as we are, and we couldn't wait to see who wrote what. In the end, we had poetry, silly stories like mine, real life essays, and more. It was a really fun exercise!
We gave ourselves a two week deadline and this is what I came up with.
A piece of my soul dies every time Barry brings up the future, because I know I have to end it. He has started talking about it more and more lately, as if he really thinks we’ll get married and have kids and a dog and that white picket fence.
I can really pick them. Let me tell you, I have quite the colorful dating history. I seem to attract the crazy ones, and I have no idea why. Maybe it’s my love of reading thrillers? The fact that I hate pickles? Maybe they can sense my love of reality TV and each guy takes it as a deeply personal challenge to make me aware that real life is way crazier than anything you see on TV?
The last guy I dated was Ozzie. He and I dated for a few months, it wasn’t super serious on my part, but I liked him. He was always dressed well, and he owns a nightclub. Ozzie really seemed to have it all together, and we got along well, but there wasn’t really a spark.
Until he was arrested and indicted on organized crime charges! Turned out he was completely embroiled in the crime world, and I had no idea! I guess a tuxedo can hide a guy’s true nature for a little while. Yeah, that’s the kind of guy I attract.
One I dated had family issues. Oliver was great at first, attentive and interesting. He’s a rich kid, but I didn’t hold that against him. He has overcome some really tough obstacles, and is really smart, and seemed to really like to just hang around and talk. His ex was always around, though, and I don’t think of myself as jealous, but he said he had to save her a lot.
Oliver’s dad died a few years ago, and he said that everything he did was to make him proud. He never talked about his mom, though, and he would literally be at his sister’s beck and call. I don’t know what he was helping her with, but he always came back from helping her sweaty and covered in bruises. It was just too much, he was definitely hiding something, so I left.
Hal and I got along well, but it was just chemistry. There didn’t seem to be any depth there, and he had this way of speaking that just freaked me out sometimes. He said he was in the military, but I never saw anyone in the military with a hair like that, and he wasn’t deployed like normal, he’d be gone for a week or two and then come back wanting to see me. He also always had money but didn’t really explain where it came from other than a random family business. We just had nothing to talk about, but man I could tell you some stories about his idea of a party!
Ozzie and I have been over for about a year now. I had been single and having a great time, and I accidentally let down my guard. I met Barry at a bar. He was the most awkward person there, he barely looks old enough to drink, even though we’re the same age. But he’s funny and nerdy, and we’re both into some of the same stuff. He seemed like the whole package!
So I said yes when he asked me out. What could it hurt? Except in some ways, Barry is just like the others. He disappears sometimes with no explanation, he comes back bruised or cut. He has this awesome job working with the police, but he barely talks about work. He volunteers at a science center, which is really neat, but he said I’m not allowed to come. Even though I have a biology degree! He also seems oddly fixated on his adopted sister. I think she’s his sister? He doesn’t talk about his family that much.
Barry is still talking about why he likes corgis, and I’m kind of just staring at my food. This place is amazing, Il Forno. It’s the best Italian food in town, and my penne alla vodka is perfect. Every bite feels like I’m inching my way to heart attack, that’s how good this place is.
“Hey babe, I’ll be right back.”
There he goes again. Basically he’s gone for what only feels like a minute, but I swear he’s off running a race or something.
“Jeez! Why are you so sweaty? And you have dirt on your head. Where were you just now?”
“Dirt? Oh, ha, must be from wrestling that art thief! Ha, where do you even get this stuff? I was in the bathroom!”
See? Another lie. I know dirt when I see it, and he’s wearing a different shirt! As if I wouldn’t notice that he’d changed? I know it makes no sense, he was gone for maybe two minutes, but there we are.
And now I have to break up with him. I hate this part. He’s so great in so many ways, but there’s always something. Maybe it’s just me, and I focus too much on the negatives? My sister says I self-sabotage my relationships by finding one thing and blowing it out of proportion. Could she be right? Sometimes I wish I was gay. I met a great new girl the other day, Natasha and I are already becoming fast friends, and she has a lethal wit.
Ah, well. One last bite before I die a little, again. The penne is still perfect, and as I swallow, I start with, “Hey, Barry, we need to talk.”
“Hold that thought, babe, I’ll be back in a flash.”
P.S. ...have you ever wondered what it's like for a normal girl to date superheroes?